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Tsukuba Science March

SNA (Tsukuba) — People march in Tsukuba, the premier science city of Japan, to support science and fact-based policymaking in the United States and in the world.


Organizer: We’re marching in solidarity with the scientists and citizens in Washington and actually people all over the world who are trying to uphold the integrity of science. We base a lot of our decisions for ourselves as a society and for human kind in general based on reality–scientific fact. When that’s not taken into consideration, then it’s a scary path we’re headed down. We march for the scientists who are working hard every day on our behalf.

The nice thing about science is that it’s always tested and retested and reviewed by different people. When we base our decisions on any ideology, then it could be up to whoever is the leader of that group. We can’t do that for all of mankind. We’re at too critical of a point as a planet.

Climate change is the number one problem we’re facing and we look to science for some ways to cope with it and deal with it. I think it’s no accident that this day was chosen. Earth Day was chosen for this march because they want the world to recognize that we cannot go on as we’ve been going. We can’t just keep with the status quo. We have to make some changes and those changes come down to basic individuals like you and I and our lifestyles, but also in our leadership and in our policymaking. They have to be based on a reality that is recognized throughout the world.

We have to pull back and take some responsibility for what we’ve created and science will help us deal with it if we listen to them.

Considering the national and privatized institutes right here in this city, it’s the science capital of Japan. If there’s any place in Japan that should have a march, it should be here.

Participant: Really in the last four years, this battle has changed a lot. I worked for the New Jersey Environmental Federation four years ago. We were talking to legislators and people in New Jersey—residents—just about getting cooling rods for nuclear plants set up and getting electric cars and electric stations. That was a very progressive agenda. It was very forward thinking. Now that battle has taken ten steps back. There’s 350 jobs not staffed at the EPA right now.

It is important that, in every corner of the world, we stand up and show people that this is what we’re fighting for and that it is important to keep it in the public eye.

Right now, data scientists are being gagged by the Trump administration. They can’t talk about their data. If we can’t agree on a base level point, then nonprofits all over the world cannot really come together on a specific set of facts. The EPA and many other US organizations were paramountly important in setting that standard.

I definitely think if you read George Orwell’s 1984, you can see many parallels there. I don’t think it’s exactly the same. The internet is a different kind of beast where, before, it was find the right answer and, now, it’s ask the right question. There are malicious people using fake news and these other sorts of post-factual ideas to influence public opinion and make people more ignorant, which is not what we want.

I trust the scientific community and the data provided by them for decades. Even ExxonMobil, when Rex Tillerson was the CEO, had data about this in the 1980s that said it was real and it was moving. Sometimes I can go outside and see how the weather has changed in the last five years and kind of think, “We have work to do.”

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